Two hirings

The Kings today named Michael Futa and Mark Yannetti as the co-directors of amateur scouting (replacing the previously fired Al Murray) and Chad Smith and strength and conditioning coach (replacing the formerly fired Mike Kadar). I asked around at Ducks practice today and nobody seemed to have great insight on these guys, beyond what’s included in the press releases I’ll attach below. Anyone have anything interesting on any of these guys?

KINGS NAME MICHAEL FUTA AND MARK YANNETTI

CO-DIRECTORS OF AMATEUR SCOUTING

LOS ANGELES The Los Angeles Kings have named Michael Futa and Mark Yannetti Co-Directors of Amateur Scouting, Kings President/General Manager Dean Lombardi announced today.

Futa comes to the Kings after five successful seasons as General Manager of the Owen Sound Attack of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL), where he was named OHL Executive of the Year in 2005. The Attack advanced to the post-season in each of the last four seasons with Futa at the helm, and high profile players like Kings prospect Trevor Lewis (17th overall, 2006 NHL Entry Draft) played for Owen Sound during Futas tenure there. Futa has also served as Director of Team Ontarios Under-17 program for the past three seasons, and his Under-17 team won the gold medal at the Canada Games this past season.

Prior to his time with the Attack, Futa served as both an Assistant Coach and Assistant General Manager with the Oshawa Generals (OHL) for two seasons (1999-01). The native of Toronto also served first as an Assistant Coach and then as a Head Coach of Toronto St. Michaels Majors (OHL) from 1997-00. Prior to that, he served as Head Coach and General Manager of the St. Michaels Buzzers (Provincial Junior A).

Before turning to the coaching ranks, Futa played four seasons of professional hockey in Europe (two seasons in Germany and two seasons in Denmark). The former left wing also captained his team at York University, where he was also honored as the student who best combined academics and athletics at the school during his senior season.

Yannetti served as a Pro Scout for the Kings this past season, his first with the franchise. Before coming to the Kings, the native of Boxford, Massachusetts, served as an Amateur Scout with the Toronto Maple Leafs. In that role, he monitored prospects in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (QMJHL) as well as Hockey East (HE), the Eastern Collegiate Athletic Conference (ECAC), the Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA), the United States Hockey League (USHL) and the U.S. National Development Team (USNTDP). The former defenseman also monitored U.S. High Schools and Tier 2 Hockey and, to a lesser degree, the OHL and the Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA).

Yannetti worked as an Amateur Scout with the Maple Leafs starting in 2004. Before that he worked as a Pro Scout for the franchise from 2000-04, focusing his attention on both the NHL and the American Hockey League (AHL). In that role, Yannetti was primarily responsible for the Eastern Conference in both leagues while also having responsibilities in the Western Conference and the ECHL.

Yannetti worked as an Advance Scout for the Stanley Cup Playoffs from 1999-04, where he was solely responsible for the pre-scouting of potential Toronto playoff opponents. His scouting included systems breakdown and analysis, and assessment of player tendencies. In addition, he also assisted the Toronto coaching staff in the development of strategies to exploit opposing player and team weaknesses.

Yannetti became a Scout after six seasons of professional hockey, and he turned pro after earning Second Team All-America honors from the American Hockey Coaches Association following a standout senior season at Williams College in 1993-94. Yannetti played three seasons with the Ephs after beginning his collegiate career at Brown University in 1990-91.

– LAKINGS.COM –

KINGS NAME CHAD SMITH AS

STRENGTH AND CONDITIONING COACH

LOS ANGELES The Los Angeles Kings have named Chad Smith as Strength and Conditioning Coach, Kings President/General Manager Dean Lombardi and Kings Head Coach Marc Crawford announced today.

The Kings are very pleased to announce the appointment of Chad as our new Strength and Conditioning Coach, said Crawford. After a thorough search, and many interviews of extremely qualified candidates, we felt very strongly that Chad was the ideal candidate for this position. The more we spoke with him and saw his approach, the more convinced we became that he is exactly what the Kings need in this very important area. Hockey is a very diverse sport and the different positions require a range of training approaches. Chad has shown a tremendous capacity to implement all of these techniques and we feel strongly, with Chads help, that strength and conditioning is an area in which the Kings will be elite in the National Hockey League.

Smith brings to the Kings a strong and varied background as both a strength and conditioning coach and as a world-class athlete. He graduated from the University of Tennessee where he was a top track and field athlete. He was a decathlete for more than 10 years and was a force on the World and the US circuit. His dedication to the sport was recognized by being ranked No. 2 in the US and No. 16 in the world.

Smith who also was a member of the USs Men World Championship bobsled team and played college football at Ferris State — has been exposed to a wide variety of training protocols through his experiences. Most recently, he was training many college and pro athletes, helping them to get both stronger and faster, with excellent results.

– LAKINGS.COM –

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  • Scott

    Rich, any news on prospect signings/tenders? It is past June 1 and June 15 is fast approaching.

    Mike Weaver told me that he would like to return to the Kings (he is UFA) but “we’ll see what the future holds.”

  • Rich Hammond

    Scott…no news is, well, no news. The clock is ticking on Marek, which is the most interesting of them all. The Ducks will get a third-round pick, probably in ’08, if they don’t get that done.

    I think Weaver is a guy who is on the radar, but obviously not a huge priority. The organizational depth on defense is thin, so I wouldn’t be surprised to see him back next season.

  • Anonymous

    I think you meant the kings will get a pick in 08???

  • Rich Hammond

    Oops! I could go back and fix that typo, but I’ll leave it up and let everyone see… Guess I’ve spent a little too much time in Anaheim.

  • Joe

    Rich, what’s your take on how Anaheim’s success will affect the Kings? Personally, with all the talk of how it will ‘force’ management to be better, I actually thing the Kings are on the right path now and don’t really need to change anything in that regards (except Cloutier).

  • Rich Hammond

    Joe…very timely question. I’m working on a story for tomorrow’s paper about the Kings and where they stand, on a day when the Ducks might win the Cup.

    My opinion is this: I would love to see both teams do well. I know there’s some animosity toward the Ducks among Kings fans, but from the perspective of growing hockey in this market, I believe nothing could be better than having the Kings and Ducks play in the Western Conference Finals. Or, short of that, at least have both teams be competitive every season.

    Also, I’m supposed to get Dean on the phone as part of this story, so I’ll try to sneak in a couple questions about some of the unsigned guys out there.